Eric Clapton

Eric Clapton was born on March 30, 1945 and was raised in Ripley, Surrey. As a teenager, Clapton was influenced by blues musicians such as Big Bill Broonzy, Robert Johnson, Muddy Waters, and Sonny Boy Williamson. In 1963, Clapton joined Casey Jones & the Engineers but left after seven gigs to join the Yardbirds, which became a commercial
John Mayall's Bluesbreakers, 1965
John Mayall's Bluesbreakers, 1965
success. Wanting to stay true to the blues, Clapton left the Yardbirds in 1965 to join John Mayall's Bluesbreakers. He then left the Bluesbreakers in July, 1968 and was replaced by Peter Green. Stan Webb of Chickenshack recalled a moment between Eric and Peter at the Windsor National Jazz, Pop, Ballads, and Blues Festival on August 13, 1967 in Martin Celmin's biography Peter Green, Founder of Fleetwood Mac, "Peter and me were talking about the price of beer-- Peter was wearing a white T-shirt and jeans-- then Eric turned up and came over to us wearing a bedspread, rings on every finger, his frizzy hair sticking out six inches, and said to Peter, 'Peter, you'll never be a star if you dress like that.' Peter just smiled. And that sums it up." Clapton went on to form Cream with Jack Bruce
John McVie and Eric Clapton
John McVie & Eric Clapton
and Ginger Baker and created a body of very influential music including 'White Room,' Strange Brew,' and 'Sunshine of Your Love.' Cream broke up in 1970 and Clapton went on to form Blind Faith with Steve Winwood Rick, Rick Grech, and Ginger Baker but, after a year, the group folded. Clapton recorded his debut solo album and joined the parents of Bekka Bramlett, Delaney & Bonnie & Friends. Clapton later joined Derek and The Dominoes and recorded the classic 'Layla' before continuing with his solo career. Despite a major heroin addiction in the 1970s, Clapton rebounded in 1974 with 'I Shot the Sheriff.' His career has been filled with ups-- including being inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame twice (The Yardbirds and Cream)-- and downs, including the tragic death of his four-year-old son Connor, which eventually led to the 1992 Grammy-winning song 'Tears in Heaven.'

In addition to his involvement in Mayall's Bluesbreakers, Clapton has a rich involvement with Fleetwood Mac. Dave Mason, who was also a member of Derek and The Dominoes and Delaney and Bonnie & Friends, worked on Clapton's 461 Ocean Boulevard album which was recorded at Criteria Studios in Miami, Florida and was released in August, 1974. On March 27, 1979, Clapton
Todd Sharp and Eric Clapton. Photo provided by Todd Sharp
Todd Sharp & Eric Clapton
married Pattie Boyd at Tucson AZ's Apostolic Assembly of Faith in Christ Jesus. Pattie was the ex-wife of Beatle George Harrison and sister to Jenny Boyd, who was married to Mick Fleetwood in the 1970's. In 1982, Clapton guested on Christine McVie's self-titled solo album (Eric is pictured at right with Todd Sharp). Lindsey Buckingham, along with Toto drummer Jeff Porcaro, helped to record 'Forever Man' for the 1985 release of Behind the Sun. Eric's former bassist, Nathan East, also played on Bob Welch's 1983 solo album, Eye Contact.

Eric recently stated in Guitar World magazine that, "It's almost like I'm just leaving John Mayall now and I'm producing my own blues band. And it's taken me thirty years of meandering the back streets to get there."


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